Eaze declares ten winners of $ 50,000 hashish enterprise grants
That’s a winner!
For the second time, Eaze gives small businesses another chance to succeed. The California-based delivery company is pursuing its desire for a fairer industry by giving 10 winners $ 50,000 and access to their best and brightest.
On February 3, former NBA superstar and current senior advisor to Eaze, Matt Barnes, announced that Eaze had selected their winning companies for the Momentum class of 2021. The group includes growers, pharmacy owners, product innovators, veterans and more.
“Improving conditions is especially important in today’s climate and in the cannabis space. Eaze has taken the lead and created a model that can be scaled. The winners don’t just get lip service, that’s money – material goods. This program is a good example and I hope we can join forces with other people so that no one has to reinvent the wheel. The more people working on a problem, the better the results, ”he says.
Help for tomorrow’s cannabis guides
Eaze’s focus on underrepresented businesses provides much-needed resources for the group of business owners committed to the cannabis industry. Some winners, such as Whitney Beatty, entrepreneur and owner of Josephine and Billie’s pharmacy, applied for the Momentum grant two years in a row.
People need to see destigmatization, people need to see action, and people need a lot more education. If that were the end of the alcohol ban, you’d want someone to tell you whether to have a shot of tequila or a bottle.
Although she received her social equity license in 2019, the opportunity was costly. Her city license requires her to maintain property and pay rent for it, even if she is not already operating her business.
The Momentum Scholarship helps Whitney finally bring her vision to life and benefit in a way that uplifts her community. Now she wants to open her business that focuses on the wellbeing of black women.
“For me as a woman of color, there just weren’t many things that pointed our community to when it came to cannabis. In Los Angeles alone, over 70% of women identify as women of color, and yet there is no pharmacy that speaks to this population group. For me it’s a huge hole in the market. I love doing things that have a place in my heart and I think it makes a difference when you get to a place that is set up for you, ”she says.
A wide range of cannabis ideas
Whitney Beatty is accompanied by nine other winning ideas, but each program participant receives tailored curriculum and mentoring based on what they want to achieve. For example, winners Jessie Grundy and Tre Hobbs are poised to take previously established businesses to the next level.
Jessie Grundy wants to achieve this by moving his flower brand The Peakz Co. to multiple states and taking care of the people who have helped him. Although his team is small, he wants to make sure they feel empowered and valued.
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“With this money I can expand my team and keep my employees happy. It took me three years to get to a team of three but now it’s me, a driver and a sales rep. I have to make sure they are good. It’s important to keep your team happy. The money will help me do some collaborations and also get more raw flowers, ”says Grundy.
And while the first class of Eazes program winners were exclusively California, there are three winners in this year’s class from other states, like Tre Hobbs and his Detroit-based Neighborhood Essentials.
“Detroit is growing fast right now. Everyone from the old market is preparing for the new legal world in which we find ourselves. Our economy is bad and we hope cannabis can be our new General Motors and help us. The number of jobs it can bring, the amount of money it can bring, and the weeds themselves all put them in better head space. “
“Neighborhood Essentials is a cannabis flower brand and clothing line, but that’s exactly the case on the surface. Neighborhood Essentials has its roots in the community. It’s a voice for those who are not heard in our church, ”says Hobbs.
“I want to use it as a platform to uplift my community and those who like it. We do community cleanups, food rides, toy rides, and education, and I want Neighborhood Essentials to inspire the next generation of minority cannabis businesses. “
Branching out of the state of California was by design for the program’s thought leaders, and Barnes agrees it was the right choice.
“We are looking to expand nationwide, knowing that markets across the country like Detroit, New York and New Jersey will be prominent in this area,” he says. “We were touched by their stories and I think we picked the right people to try what we did in California.”
Forward and up
I’m excited to see the winners grow and take off.
Now, Eaze has the honor of helping these business owners navigate the cannabis industry on behalf of their communities and more.
Each participant in the program will take part in virtual workshops for 12 weeks and discuss their biggest obstacles with the Eaze team in hopes that they can be the next big topic in cannabis.
Check out the full list of winners and keep your eyes peeled for what the class will do in 2021.
Learn more about the announcement on Eaze.
Janessa was born and raised in the Midwest. She is the current arts editor for Leafly. She has a background in content, activism, and African American studies.
Show article by Janessa Bailey